Wednesday, May 18, 2016

I hate this

Nevermind where I got this quote, it was a throwaway in a forum, so probably isn't quite as obnoxious as it sounds.

We need to drive a hard difference between "photography" and "Photography" in this world. And that's my intent.

This sort of crap gets my goat. In the first place it boils down to "I am the arbiter of good taste", and in the second place it's creating a totally artificial distinction. There is no difference between "photography" and "Photography", damn it.

Yes, there is a gamut of intent in taking pictures.

Yes, there is a gamut of intent in consuming pictures.

The pictures themselves don't know anything about this. Snapshots can be Fine Art, Fine Art can be pointless garbage. The same picture can be both at different times, or in different contexts. The intent of the picture taker is uncorrelated with the intent and desire of the picture-looker-at. Meaning can be found in the mundane and the banal as well as in the fraught.

People who wish to separate out Good Photography from Bad Photography have, in my experience, terrible taste, and tend to lean strongly toward pictures which have the trappings of Importance, but are in fact just poor copies of much better pictures. There I go doing it myself, damn it.

Photography does not need some self-appointed white knight to save it from instagram. Photography is doing just fine, thanks, and it's embraced instagram. Sure, I hate most of the pictures on instagram and 500px too. Sure, they're mostly just copies of one another, stretching back in a chain of influence to, sometimes, a picture with some weight. So what? Now go back under your rock.

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